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THE NEW SCIENCE: Changing Ourselves by Changing the Brain

“Does mind exist?” asks neuroscientist Daniel Siegel, as he opens a two-day conference on his favorite subject, interpersonal neurobiology. Siegel is on a mission to tell the world that by working to make changes in your mind you can reorganize the neural pathways in your brain. He insists that if you work at it, you can spend more time in …

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Couch potatoes may have smaller brains later in life

Poor physical fitness in middle age may be linked to a smaller brain size 20 years later, according to a study published in the February 10, 2016, online issue ofNeurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. “We found a direct correlation in our study between poor fitness and brain volume decades later, which indicates accelerated brain aging,” …

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Do we have free will? Researchers test mechanisms involved in decision-making

Our choices seem to be freer than previously thought. Using computer-based brain experiments, researchers from Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin studied the decision-making processes involved in voluntary movements. The question was: Is it possible for people to cancel a movement once the brain has started preparing it? The conclusion the researchers reached was: Yes, up to a certain point—the ‘point of …

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DEPRESSION CHANGES GRAY MATTER IN YOUNG BRAIN

The brains of children who suffer clinical depression as preschoolers develop differently than those of preschoolers not affected by the disorder, a new study shows. These children’s gray matter—tissue that connects brain cells and carries signals between those cells and is involved in seeing, hearing, memory, decision-making, and emotion—is lower in volume and thinner in the cortex, a part of …

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Paul Fassa – Dr. Burzynski on Trial Again – Will His Life-saving Cancer Treatments Ever be Available to the Public?

Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski, M.D., established his Burzynski Institute for cancer research and healing in Houston, TX, the same city that hosts the prestigious MD Anderson Cancer Center. Originally from Poland, Dr. Burzynski has been researching and developing a unique approach for curing cancer since 1976. His approach avoids the carpet bombing chemotherapy of conventional oncology that destroys healthy cells as …

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LOA Today – 08.27.15

This week on LOA Today, Uohna tells us about a Buddhist monk who has mastered the art of being happy every conscious moment of every day of his life. He even volunteered for 3 hours inside an MRI unit to help a Western medical researcher learn more about how his brain works. Most people start to freak out in an MRI machine after a half hour. Three hours later, he emerged happy and content. Is he crazy, or is he someone we need to learn to emulate?

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Paul D. Thacker and Charles Seife – The Fight Over Transparency: Round Two

The backlash against transparency is now underway. The battles being waged are likely to leave their mark over how to perform — and how to interpret — the medical and scientific literature for many years to come. In the past two decades, it seemed like much of the debate over financial conflicts of interest had quieted. In the wake of …

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Jeff Gerth – FDA Examines Whether MRI Drugs Accumulate in Brain Tissue

The Food and Drug Administration announced today it is investigating the risk of brain deposits for patients who are given repeated MRIs using imaging drugs that contain a heavy metal. The FDA did not announce any label changes for the nine medicines that contain the metal, gadolinium, saying there was a “need for additional information.” However, “to reduce the potential …

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Left in the Brain: Potentially Toxic Residue from MRI Drugs by Jeff Gerth

With a family history of breast cancer, Marcie Jacobs decided in June 2001 that an MRI screening was her best preventive option. As is common with MRIs, Jacobs was injected beforehand with a contrast agent, a drug that helps sharpen the resulting images. But after a few of these treatments, she began noticing some strange cognitive effects. Jacobs began missing …